The Value of Time

When I first got into trading, I did it so I could work from home. I never could have known all the events that would transpire since that decision. What began as an attempt to stay with my newborn proved invaluable time and time again. Between health issues, items I needed to take care of for my son, managing the household, and more, the ability to have a career with this kind of flexibility is rare and also like gold. The idea of working from home began long before the pandemic and subsequent shift of the business world to work from home and has continued afterward.

In the beginning, I was trying to find a trading strategy that fit life for me with a newborn. There are so many trading strategies and setups. I had this idea that I wanted to make daily income, so I needed to get in and out every day. I started day trading, which turned out to be a disaster. Day trading is pretty high-stress, and it requires constant attention. I thought initially I could take time to trade when my son was otherwise entertained. Well, what ended up happening was that I would get into a trade, and then he inevitably would interrupt me before I could exit. Then, of course, I would miss my exit.

After my failed adventure in day trading with a baby in hand, I shifted to swing trading. The high-stress nature of watching every tick just was not for me. I wanted something where I could step away from the screens and eat lunch without worrying about money evaporating before my eyes. Then, I started to focus on the daily squeeze and trade in a 1-3 week time frame. As long as the market was meandering in my direction, I didn’t need to watch it every minute it was open.

Finally, I had found my sweet spot. I loved the directional nature of the market and the excitement behind catching a move on a chart I’d analyzed. I went from trading calls to debit spreads, credit spreads, and butterflies. I discovered as time went on that I loved trading butterflies due to the risk to reward, low debits to enter, and 50-300%+ upside potential.

I began appearing in the financial news media as the years went on. It was a drastic shift from trading at home in my pajamas to suddenly flying back and forth to New York regularly and being driven back and forth to the downtown Austin studio. Then, I started trading more earnings reports and added this to my repertoire of trading setups. This became even more frequent as I was regularly requested to discuss earnings in the media, so I kept an even closer eye on them than ever before.

By then, my son was in school and spent his afterschool hours going to various activities and afterschool programs. I would trade on my phone and research airplanes in the back of the car. It wasn’t the easiest, admittedly, but then the pandemic struck. Everything ground to a halt. Suddenly, I was back at home with my son, not just parenting like normal but acting as his teacher. Spending all day during market hours researching, trading, and watching charts was not in the cards like it used to be.

No matter where I went, he was always right there!

Now, I’m not special I know the events of the pandemic impacted everyone everywhere, and my story is certainly no more trying than what others have gone through. But I tell it because of the way it’s shifted my focus, my trading, and most importantly, my life.

It was also during this time that I began to prepare for the arrival of baby number two. I knew I’d kept my first baby home with me and was determined to do it with the second. So, what was I to do? How would my trading style evolve again, with another on the way?

Market open and market close have always been my favorite times and most protected times in the stock market. Regardless of what I have going on, whether it’s a TV show or something with my kids, these are the sacred hours for me. There is no newsletter writing or makeup application during the market close! Why? They are generally the most active times, with high volume and price movement. I like trading the opening gap, and I also like reading the price action during the last 30-45 minutes of market hours to determine where I’m going with my analysis and trades.

And so, market open and close have always been my favorite times to trade. And, as I shifted to trading more earnings reports, it became such a natural transition that I wondered why I hadn’t done it earlier. It is during this time that earnings trades are best traded and managed. It also was the perfect fit for me and my ever-evolving life!

The whole family!

It may seem silly to speak of how my trading strategy works for me and my life. I’m sure some people will think, “Who cares about your kids, tell me how to trade!” But here’s the thing. More than anything, is that there are so many ways to trade, but if you can’t find a method that fits within your life, there is really nothing you can do to find one that will make money for you. Trying to fit a square peg in a round hole will never work.

The thing about trading is that after you come up with your strategy and hone it, all you have to do is apply it on repeat at the most critical hours. That’s exactly what my earnings strategy is for me. I use and apply it during my sacred market times. I can get in one day and out the next morning. Most of the time, I don’t even have to manage the exits due to using orders within my trading platform. This means that even if my baby is screaming, I know I still have something in place to exit my trade when it needs exiting, at the parameters I set.

Want to learn more? Join me at my free webinar, tomorrow, Wednesday, October 11th, at 7 pm to learn more about how I trade, in one day and out the next. These overnight trades are what I’ve found works well for me, and I’m looking forward to sharing them with you. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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